Hedgefest, a wild marriage of music and hedgehogs, is coming to Hackney on November 17.
The number of hedgehogs in the UK is quickly diminishing, with figures in London falling especially fast (the count has dropped more than 50% in the city over the past 10 years!). So it’s only right that a festival would be held in their honour – as part of a much bigger plan to protect these wonderful woodland creatures.
It’s important to note that Hedgefest isn’t just about cooing at cute prickly animals, but rather about raising awareness and educating people on how they can help to stop this rapid decline in the urban hedgehog population.
A little birdie tells us that Regent’s Park is one of the last places in the city to house these hedgies – and it’s certainly the only central London Royal Park with a breeding population.
“In 2014, with the help of top wildlife scientists and over 150 volunteers, we discovered a small population of around 30-40 animals living and breeding in the park. Our hedgehog team return to The Regent’s Park in May and September every year to see how this vulnerable population is faring, to help inform park management plans.” Find out more about Regent’s Park’s huggle of hedgehogs* here.
Held at the Sebright Arms in Hackney, the hedgehog festival will be an all-day affair featuring live music, local bands, poetry readings and face painting. The highlight of the day is set to be an 87-year-old east Londoner playing a ‘flaming flute’. Sounds hedgy AF.
Sadly, no hedgehogs will be in attendance, but there will be plenty of hedgehog themed cocktails to keep you company. (There are no clues as to what this could mean, but let’s hope they’re not ‘spiked’.)
Location: Sebright Arms, 34 Coate Street, Hackney, E2 9AG. Nearest station: Cambridge Heath. Find it on Google maps.
Opening hours: Saturday, November 17.
Price: entry is free, hedgehog-themed cocktails are not.
More information: follow them on Instagram @hedgefest.
*it’s technically an ‘array’ of hedgehogs, but that isn’t cute enough and hedgies deserve better than that.